The McGuinty government may have lied and stripped Ontario hospitals of their promised funding, but in reality, this hasn't created much change in the job market. The layoffs were mostly through attrition, positions being amalgamated or eliminating vacant positions.
In you want to stay in the city, The Ottawa Hospital (TOH) would probably be your best bet as they have three sites (General, Civic and Riverside) and are always posting nursing positions. The Queensway Carleton Hospital west of the city is somewhat harder to get into. Forget about the Montfort Hospital unless you're perfectly french. The world renowned Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) has many RPNs in different units if peds is your thing. And the Royal Ottawa Hospital (ROH) is an inpatient psych facility.
If you're considering the hospital route, there are many community/rural hospitals just outside the city - east, west and south, which have much lower turn over rates, but are more personal and "cozy" that the city hospitals. Unlike the rural hospitals where inpatients would be a med/surg unit, you can "specialize" in the city hospitals - ie) orthopedics, neurosugery, maternity, psych, etc. or go the outpatient clinic route (of which there are many at TOH's Riverside site as this is a day surgery/outpatient facility only.) Generally, the hospitals pay from $25/hr and up with decent shift premiums, in lieu of benefits for part-timers and uniform
allowances. At TOH, the primary care model of nursing is prevalent so (ideally) you will only be assigned a patient you can fully provide nursing care for and in the surgical program we RPNs work to full scope, including starting IVs, taking blood for culture and hanging IV meds (no IV push.)
As for LTC, they are strapped for RPNs, you could more or less walk into a full time position if this is your thing, and although there aren't enough LTC facilities to accommodate the demand, there are many here to choose from both municipal and private. My experience was within the private sector and it was overall a negative one as corporate greed is not immune to compromising the vulnerable in our society, but if you can deal with chronic understaffing, ultra heavy workloads, lack of time and equipment, and neglectful management, then go for it. Your job here is predominately giving meds, doing dressings, LOTS of paperwork and supervising the PSWs. Pay scale starts from about $21/hr with pitiful shift premiums if any.
Community care is in high demand, but other than ensuring you have a reliable vehicle, I wouldn't recommend this route for the novice nurse as you are pretty much working on your own, so assessment skills and critical thinking have to be spot on. However you have the luxury of choosing your own client load, continuity of care and working independently. There is collaborative support of course, but it would be a phone call away. Pay rate is generally around $22/hr and many do offer signing bonuses as they are also strapped for nurses.
Retirement homes pay the worst - maybe $17/hr - and you will definitely lose your skills in this sector. RPNs don't really do much - as this sector is unregulated, usually UCP's give meds and do just about everything they shouldn't be doing. Some of these homes are swanky and others outright rank.
Have a look at some of these links. I didn't link any retirement homes but there are many. Home Care in this area would include VON, Bayshore, Saint-Elizabeth's, WeCare, etc.
If you have any other questions, feel free to ask.
Hospitals in the City:
Welcome to the Ottawa Hospital
CHEO - Careers
Welcome to the Royal Ottawa Health Care Group
Rural hospitals outside the city:
Almonte General Hospital - Home
Welcome to the Arnprior District Memorial Corporation - Partners In Caring
Welcome to the Perth and Smiths Falls District Hospital
OMNI Health Care | Nursing Homes Long Term Care | Ontario | Canada
Welcome to Specialty Care Specialty Living
City of Ottawa LTC:
City of Ottawa